Mar 6, 2013 | Divorce


Older people continue to get divorced at a higher rate compared to the rest of the nation. A new study found that couples over the age of 50 have the highest divorce rate and that their divorce rate has doubled between 1990 and 2010.

In 1990, only one in 10 divorces was with couples over the age of 50, according to the National Center for Family and Marriage Research. Now, couples over the age of 50 are involved in every one in four divorces in the U.S.

Why has the divorce rate increased for older couples? The study suggests that there are a few factors that have contributed to more baby boomers and older couples getting divorced these days. The study said that more women have careers now and can afford to live on their own and that older couples are now more accepting of divorce, where in the past many people believed divorce was not allowed by their church.

The study said that the increase in baby boomers getting divorced is also due to the fact that many couples’ children have moved out of the house, causing some couples to realize they don’t want to be together any longer.

Which baby boomer couples are more likely to get divorced? The study found that race and education play a role in the high divorce rate among older couples. African-American baby boomers have the highest divorce rate, followed by Hispanics, whites and Asians. The study also found that couples with more education had a lower divorce rate, while couples where one or both are unemployed are more likely to get divorced.

The study suggested that if the baby boomer divorce rate continues to stay this way, divorces will continue to increase because of the aging population and that people are living longer.


Source: Chicago Tribune, “Post0-50 divorce rate doubled in 20 years,” Leslie Mann, Feb. 27, 2013